The BFRC (British Fenestration Rating Council) is a subsidiary of the GGF (Glass and Glazing Federation) providing independently verified energy efficiency ratings for replacement windows and doors. These are known as Window Efficiency Ratings (WERs). The organisation prides itself on being the leading UK energy efficiency rating scheme specifically for windows and doors, and anybody selling Energy Rated Windows must be licensed as an Authorised Retailer (and their BFRC rated windows must be sourced from a licence-holding manufacturer).
Scores for replacement windows are given based on a variety of energy efficiency factors, including how heat loss and air leakage are balanced by solar gains. Low emissivity coating for window glass can reduce the amount of solar gains, as can triple glazing. The relationship between heat loss and solar gains is almost inversely proportional, so there is usually a trade-off for one and a balance must be found. That said, double-glazed replacement windows can still achieve good energy ratings. Energy ratings are calculated by BFRC Certified Simulators, who are trained and monitored for consistency and accuracy of ratings. In addition to selecting qualified Simulators completing the assessments, ratings then undergo verification by the BFRC for reliability.
BFRC-rated replacement windows and doors will have a rainbow sticker displaying the WER score, similar to the stickers found on fridges, freezers and other domestic electrical appliances. The rating bands go from ‘A++’ to ‘E’ and are intended to be used as a comparative system to other similar products. BFRC ratings give the consumer a good idea of how the product holds up in regards to energy efficiency, helping them to make an informed choice about which replacement windows will be the best investment